EDM isn't known for its subtlety. Its aim is often to be as bombastic as possible, with builds and drops designed to reliably animate huge crowds of dancers. As a producer, coming up with a variation on the formula that's completely your own is no easy task, but Toronto's Bwana is up to the challenge. With "Drop Mechanism," a new track from his forthcoming EP on UK label Aus Music, he finds strength in restraint. The song unfolds over a patient seven minutes. Its low, driving beat is given just enough breathing room as it builds to a crescendo. The climax relies on an intricate network of effervescent textures and stretches of negative space. Bwana is fluent in the language of dance music—listening to his songs, it's clear he knows how to make bodies move. But he's also invented some of his own vocabulary.
It makes sense, then, that his sound is the result of deep listening. "'Drop Mechanism' is the result of countless hours listening to classic Sasha-Digweed era prog-house while also exploring the world of techno," he told The FADER. "Throwing the two influences together created, on first glance, a muscular and driving techno floor-filling bomb, until suddenly the track opens into a patient and euphoric breakdown that I'd like to think would go over well if played to the backdrop of an Ibiza sunset."
Photo credit: Louisa Nicolaou